After considering over 30 new plant sites, an iconic boatbuilder has chosen to stay in Florida.
Local and state leaders along with the media were invited to check out Bertram’s new 37-acre headquarters on May 9 at a company-sponsored lunch. The company is moving all boatbuilding operations from Miami to the larger facility on Merritt Island in central Florida near Cape Canaveral.
Bertram, which is part of the Ferretti Group and celebrated its 50th anniversary last year, has manufactured some of the most recognizable sport-fishing boats in existence. They plan to continue the tradition in a facility that gives them room to grow.
“This is just one of many big steps we have yet to make moving forward, “ said Bertram president Alton Herndon on Wednesday, adding that the company has “big plans on the drawing board.”
The new location is a boon to the area, and is expected to have an estimated $26.3 million economic impact when fully up and running, which should be in late 2012. The new facility is also expected to create 221 jobs, which should help make up some of those lost in the area by the recent termination of the shuttle program.
“This is a great not only for the Space Coast, but for the state of Florida,” said State Representative Steve Crisafulli, who was in attendance at Wednesday’s event along with State Senator Thad Altman.